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buying land off the internet

 
Christopher Harrod
Posts: 7
Location: Sonoma County, Northern California
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i live in sonoma county and land around here is expensive. i'm looking for land here in sonoma county which has a great climate, community, and market for selling artisan goods. That's why it's probably so dang expensive. Now, I've also started to extend my search to other places. it's impossible to go look at all the properties first hand when working full time.

has anybody bought land off the internet? if so, from where? what did you look for? did it work out? do you plan to make a living from this property? would you recommend it? any other input would be great. thanks!
 
Brian Shepherd
Posts: 9
Location: Lakeland Florida zone 9
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I spent years looking at land in the internet. It helped me narrow my focus and understand what the cost would be for the land I wanted.
In the end I found 40 acres in Madison County Florida. I visited the area and talked with someone I knew who had also purchased land in that area.

I wanted:
Good road access on a county road with easy access to electrical utilities.
High and dry, mostly wooded land with a population of wild game.
Large parcels of land surrounding my property that will not be subdivided into dense housing or commercial use.
Land that had not been soaked with chemicals.

Madison County is great, low population farming county that does not bother me. Taxes are low.
You cannot build a house on less than 40 acres in the area I am in.
I am located near a state wildlife conversation area that borders the Suwannee river.

You can find great land around me for 2 to 3 thousand an acre in 40 acre parcels, most of it is currently covered in planted pines for the paper industry. You can keep the pines or sell them to loggers.
You can get it cheaper for larger parcels or parcels with swampy areas off the beaten track. Watch out for these, they can cost you a lot of money to run electrical if it is not there already.

Brian Shepherd
www.40acrewoods.com
 
Dale Hodgins
gardener
Posts: 6139
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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The internet is a great place to start your search. Massive amounts of time,fuel and legwork can be saved. But in the end, you need to physically get yourself to the land since it is very easy to sugar coat things to accentuate the positive and ignore the negative when photos are taken. Half of the nature photos in my photo album were taken at demolition sites. This would not seem to be the case if you were to look at them all, since I'm careful to pick a natural backdrop. I have gone to look at great properties and absolute shit properties that had very similar glowing ads on the net. One was 10 acres of steep, north facing rock face, so steep that it was necessary to hold on to something while climbing. It was described as a potential homestead site. Average soil depth - one inch. The internet photo showed a lush valley beyond.

The drunken fool who held the listing for my place, didn't bother to mention the positive aspects and there was no photo. Only my knowlege of the area informed me that I was going to see something unique. The add simply described another clear cut. The photos below are typical. I took these at my place. The photos from the cold rock were just as nice as this as they masked everything that was wrong.



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Brenda Groth
pollinator
Posts: 4434
Location: North Central Michigan
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we sold my MIL's house on the internet, craigs list..successfully...however may I please make this one cautionary statement...people are getting killed when they go to buy things that they have seen on the internet..so

if you do..make sure you are very well protected when you go to look at any item..that you are considering buying off the internet..make sure you have at least 2 other people with you and possibly protection.

if you are selling, same thing..have others around when you meet and have your protection..

way too many murders..way too many
 
Fred Morgan
steward
Posts: 979
Location: Northern Zone, Costa Rica - 200 to 300 meters Tropical Humid Rainforest
15
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Usually here in Costa Rica, if you buy off the Internet, you will spend 2 to 3 times as much, mainly because the Internet is aimed at foreigners, with too much money and are impatient. My method to buy is to put a sign up in the local farm supply, etc what I am looking for, and what I am willing to spend per acre. I require they submit the offering to my lawyer to be checked out, first before contacting me. I don't go see a property till we have agreed on a price range and that it is 100% suitable for my needs (plantation / reforestation).

It works very well here, and I buy cheaper than even the locals.
 
Christopher Harrod
Posts: 7
Location: Sonoma County, Northern California
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thanks for the helpful tips everyone. from what i understand from peoples experiences is that i should go out and view the land before making an offer. things i should consider are electricity, roads, etc.

if there wasnt electricity to the site, maybe solar panels? i think that would be ideal.
i hear if there isn't a house on the land it's harder to get a loan, is this true from your experience?
has anybody used landandfarm.com? are there prices reasonable?
did anybody consider how close a farmers market is? or slaughterhouse? i'm thinking of growing food for my own consumption but also selling jams/jellies/dried meat/fresh/frozen meat/nursery stock.
if i wasn't close to a farmer's market, maybe mail order? does anybody have experience doing a mail order/internet business selling products from the farm?
not looking to make it rich but it would be nice to be comfortable paying off the property.
 
John Polk
steward
Posts: 8019
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Some lending institutions will not loan on vacant land (it is slower to move if they get stuck with it). If you are buying agriculture land, you will probably be best using rural lenders rather than big city lenders, as they know the area, and what they are dealing with.

Many lenders are worried about farmland. If you buy a home (within your means), they reasonably expect to be paid monthly. If it is farmland, they assume that you will need to sell crops to make your payments. Much riskier in their eyes.

 
james kemp
Posts: 2
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I am in England and there's not much for sale. I did look and find that 30% of land in UK is unclaimed and if you find it fence it send photo to solicitor with date, then after 12 years it's yours
 
Frolf Lundgren
Posts: 39
Location: Finland, MN
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I found my property online (realtor) n lowballed them on the asking price, paying up front helped. Visited the place via snowmobile. Had a feel for the area from previous camping trips. Very happy with everything.
 
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